Newsletter - June 2020

From Graham Instrell, Wiltshire LDWA Chair

"How nice it is that we can now travel to walk all day somewhere distant and meet someone to do it with. We're so lucky to be able to be in out-of-the way places and stay away from the madding crowd at "beauty spots". There's plenty of room for all of us! I expect you've come across folk, as I have, who are finding themselves enjoying walking much further than their usual distance so maybe there's an opportunity to chat them up and mention LDWA. I think it's going to be a while before we can meet as before for our hobby but it's great to have that to look forward to. I certainly won't take it for granted anymore. Meanwhile, we'll manage with two meeters! Keep looking after yourselves."

In this month's newsletter:

  • Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update;
  • Adrian's Icelandic Adventure 2015; and
  • Name The Path



Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update


From David Morgan, LDWA Chair

The National Executive Committee (NEC) Coronavirus sub-committee monitors the guidance provided by the Governments of England (UK), Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and meets every Monday to review the advice provided to LDWA members.

It appears to be the case that LDWA activities are going to have to adhere to a ‘new normal’ in the short, medium and perhaps long term. In order to protect the very good reputation that the LDWA has developed over many years both at a national level and in the local communities in which it operates, the NEC will consider various aspects relating to our activities. This will include things like social distancing, food hygiene, car parking, meeting places and even the width of paths that we walk on.

Please be reassured that the NEC is considering how to mitigate the associated risks and is considering when social walks and challenge events might be allowed to resume. These are difficult times for all involved in the LDWA and the NEC is acutely aware of the distress that a loss of LDWA activities is causing for many of our members. We are grateful for your continued patience.



Adrian's Icelandic Adventure 2015


From Adrian Crocker:

"I took a different type holiday by visiting the land of fire and ice. This time I was to be a camping experience. Arriving in the capital Reykjavik, a modern city which I found had little culture of interest to me apart from the Blue lagoon and municipal gardens. The centre has been developed for the tourist, full of restaurants, cafes and clothes shops. Whale watching is a growing tourist attraction and a big money maker.

I met up with 14 other intrepid travellers who came from several countries to experience this extraordinary country. We had a cook come guide and a bus driver. The vehicle we were to travel in was a converted bus that could accommodate tents table’s chairs and food. It took us over rivers and rocky passes that only 4x4 vehicles to go, we were to stay at five camp sites at various places around the country spending two nights at each, travelling anticlockwise around the country.

Our first stop was in the Thorsmork valley region, this area is dominated by mountains and glaciers and walked for 2 hours in the area of Evafiallaiokull volcano who in 2010 erupted causing so much damaged, then visited 60 metre high Skogafoss waterfall. Travelling on through spectacular scenery crossing stream where the water on occasions nearly flooded the bus eventually arriving at our camp site at Skaftafell National Park. The following morning we visited the Seljalandsfoss and Svartifoss waterfalls. Our serious hike was next day when we walked to the Kristinartindar peaks, views from the top were fantastic the Hvannadalshnukur mountain is the highest in Iceland, huge ice caps tumbling glaciers could be seen in all directions. Moving on the next day’s hike was in and around the Dyrfjoll mountains where the scenery was completely different, littered with gigantic boulders which had been left in a previous ice age.

From there we headed for Lake Myvatn visiting the Dettifoss waterfall then on to lava fields at Dimmuborgir we then hiked to Mount Hverfjall a huge crater 140 metres deep and 1,000 metres in diameter. This volcano erupted 2,500 years ago. Travelling on to camp site near Krafla volcano which erupted 1975. We then hiked across lava fields, a surreal landscape as far as one could see, steam rising from the burning hot lava, an unbelievable site.

And finally we visited Thingvellir National Park the site of the first Icelandic parliament, a beautiful botanical garden with its own micro climate growing flowers not seen anywhere else in the country and also as the largest lake in the country.


I really enjoyed my Iceland experience a great country it certainly lived up to its reputation, with a long history of volcano eruptions which has left large parts of the country covered in lava, some of which date back many millions of years. Huge volcanic monoliths appear in all directions. Every corner turned presented a striking visual sensation, black sandy beaches, icebergs lagoons and vast rock plateau. Torrents of water from melting glaciers creating spectacular waterfalls and large areas of bubbling geothermal geysers rising from the earth, all revealed this extraordinary country.

We travelled and camped in very remote places that few people visit, walked in extraordinary and spectacular lunar landscape. We enjoyed a soak in a natural hot thermal sulphur pools. I had my own tent which I erected at each camp site. Our guide, Gummer, was a first class cook. We had to stop at small town occasionally to restock our food. He cooked porridge each morning for breakfast and a hot meal of fish or meat with salad for dinner, all cooked in big pans heated by gas burners. For our part we washed up loaded and packed everything back on the bus ready to move on to the next site."

Thanks Adrian. It brought back fond memories of a similar holiday I did in 1985, and a more recent fly-drive holiday in 2018.



Name The Path


The answer to last month's Name The Path was the Frome Valley Walkway, an easy 18-mile river walk from Old Sodbury into the centre of Bristol.

In the continued absence of any forthcoming walks, here's another challenge for you. Simply name this long distance path. You'll find it in the LDWA's online database. Good luck!


Name The Path



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That's it for another newsletter. All our newsletters are available via the Wiltshire LDWA website. If you have anything to contribute to future editions, please can you get it to me by the 20th of each month. I look forward to seeing you out on our group walks later in the year.

Warmest regards


Secretary of the Wiltshire LDWA